Larry “Rex” Brasell died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday November 17, 2016 of kidney failure at the age of 72. He was born in Seagraves Texas, but considered Lubbock to be his childhood home. He moved to New Mexico to join the UA Local 412 Plumbers and Pipefitters Union in Albuquerque and spent 10 years as a pipefitter before running for Secretary Treasurer of the Union. He served two three-year terms and then served two terms as Business Manager. He remained a loyal member of the union to the very end. He was a committed pragmatic progressive who believed in working within the existing political system to improve people’s lives. To this end he was the founding president of New Mexico PROPAC, a progressive political action committee, that had a positive impact on New Mexico politics that endured for many years. He served on many boards and committees, both in Albuquerque and nationally for his union.
Rex met his wife Elinor Gollay after retirement. They moved to St. Petersburg FL, traveled around the world, and eventually settled in Portland OR. Shortly after he learned his kidneys were failing. Elinor gave him a kidney and the two of them were able to continue their world travels for more than six years. Even as his health was failing, he continued to be an avid reader, to follow politics, and be a loving father, friend and husband.
He leaves behind two daughters, Brenna McJimsey and Rachel Lewis, three grandsons, Rowan and Malcolm McJimsey and Jonah Lewis, all of Albuquerque and his devoted wife, Elinor Gollay in Portland, OR.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the organization that saved his life with a kidney transplant:
Donations by check should be made payable to Good Samaritan Foundation, For: William M. Bennett Chair of Medicine Endowment, In Memory of: Rex Brasell
The mailing address is: Good Samaritan Foundation, PO Box 4484, Portland, OR 97208.
Published in Albuquerque Journal from Nov. 22 to Nov. 23, 2016